26 October 2012

Soft soft soft!

I think I am slightly soft. My horse costs me the best part of £300 per month to keep in the Winter, that's quite a large chunk of a monthly wage. Anyway, due to some health issues and various other things (moving etc) I've not been riding recently, not for a while so a girl at the yard has been riding and looking after my horse for me for the past year. That's all fine but I was paying for everything while somebody else got almost sole use of my horse.

It got to the point earlier this month where I just couldn't do it anymore so I advertised my horse for loan. I retain ownership but the 'borrower' pays for all upkeep and costs. It's a kind of rent agreement really.
I drafted the add up, told S (girl who rides my horse) that I was no longer able to do it and that was that. Or at least I thought it was until I went up to the yard with the first set of people who were interested and S disappeared from site only to be found in tears behind the stable block....

Still I tried to harden my heart and carry on and then had four lots of people come out this week. S had hardened herself and showed my horse off to her best ability, she made her look fabulous. When S was questioned by the one lot of people about my horse's habits she could very easily have made my horse's excitable moments sound quite frightening but she didn't, she made her sound lovely but told the truth.

She really helped me show her off wonderfully. S is 14, I think her behaviour showed a massive amount of maturity and sense. Despite knowing her actions in showing my horse off would possibly lead to my horse being moved to a new home and S no longer being able to ride or see her. For a 14 year old girl that is some act of maturity.

The end result of that was I came home feeling as guilty as sin at wrenching my horse away from her, the horse who comes thundering up the field when she see's S enter the yard and who follows her about like a dog.
I battled with my conscience, looked at the reality at me no longer being able to afford to keep my horse for somebody else to get enjoyment from but still couldn't face breaking a girl's heart. Apparently she'd been in tears quite a bit recently over Sunny and then when she said to me, as a passing comment in a 'she's a lovely horse' tone rather than 'I'm going to guilt trip you' tone, "my day isn't complete until I've been to the yard, it's like something is missing from my day", that really stuck in my head.

Sooooo, the end result was me phoning her father and outlining the fact I genuinely could not afford to keep a horse for somebody else to get enjoyment from. Her father has agreed to pay the liver and contribute towards feed while I pay insurance and other running costs. I'm happy with that, she's my horse and I'd never sell her but at the same time, I'm not going to throw money away paying for her upkeep for somebody else to completely enjoy.

I just could not face being the one the completely break a girl's heart so damn my soft side but it's the right thing to do and I feel happy with the solution. I know without doubt S adores my horse and worships the ground she walks.
The fact I had S on the phone last night saying thank you, almost in tears, tells me I've done the right thing. Thank goodness her father agreed to pay the livery though as it's meant a happy arrangement can continue :-).


cogidubnus said...

No...I don't think you're soft...think I must be though, sitting here with tears welling up...nice one GND...you've got quality.


Girl*Next*Door said...

Thanks :-). I didn't do it for me, well I did in one way as I love my horse but I couldn't do it to S, I just couldn't do it. I went up to the yard today and was told that she almost bounced on to the yard wreathed in smiles and talking nineteen to the dozen about how Sunny was no longer for loan. As I say, the right thing and how rough would it have been for Sunny to have moved so close to the Christmas break. I felt guilty as sin when I came home and I can't have been hiding it as well as I thought as my yard owner turned round to me today and said "I've a feeling this was going to happen, I saw the strain and upset on your face when those second lot of people came out. You've got a good heart in that little body my girl!" Which made me completely embarrassed but it was lovely to go to the yard with a spring in my step and not a heavy heart :-).

Girl*Next*Door said...

Emotion must have got the better of me when I did the post too as the spelling mistakes and typos are horrendous! :-O

JR said...

GND, what an absolutely lovely thing to do; for everyone involved. I'm so glad that fate (and liberal doses of karma I'm sure) came good in giving everyone a workable solution. Your story put a big smile on the face of an increasingly cynical and grumpy git and gave my belief in humanity a welcome boost.

Good on the other young lady too. As you say, she showed exceptional maturity and she should be proud of that.

I just hope your horse can cope with being loved, spoiled and generally doted on by two girls over Christmas!


Girl*Next*Door said...

JR, it worked out really well. Actually couldn't have worked out better as I've just got given the official go ahead to start riding again :-).

I told S she should be hugely proud of herself for showing such maturity at such a young age. She is a lovely girl :-).